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Intel Pentium D processors as well as Intel’s 945-series chipsets will be announced on the 26th of May, 2005, according to a report from HKEPC web-site which is based in Asia. The announcement is expected to mark availability of mainstream computer platforms with dual-core microprocessors.

Intel’s first family of dual-core chips for desktops originally code-named Smithfield consists of Intel Pentium D 800-series as well as Intel Pentium Extreme Edition central processing units. Initial Intel Pentium D 800-series central processing units use 800MHz Quad Pumped Bus, integrate 2MB (1MB per core) L2 cache and utilize LGA775 form-factor. The dual-core desktop processors will be made using 90nm process technology, each processing engine will use the same architecture with the current Pentium 4 “Prescott” chip and will sport EM64T, EDB as well as Enhanced Intel SpeedStep technologies. Intel Pentium D processors will not enable Hyper-Threading technology leaving this as a prerogative of Intel Pentium Extreme Edition processor 840.

Some sources reported that Intel’s dual-core Intel Pentium D products will be relatively affordable: $241, $316 or $530 – depending on the speed-bin and model – for 820 (2.80GHz), 830 (3.00GHz) or 840 (3.20GHz) chips respectively. Intel Pentium Extreme Edition processor 840 that also runs at 3.20GHz, but with HT technology enabled, costs $999 in 1000-unit quantities and is available now from PC makers like Dell. Intel’s dual-core microprocessors only work on mainboards featuring Intel’s 945- and 955-series chipsets.

Intel’s 945P, 945G and derivative chipsets are Intel’s this year family of high-performance core-logic sets that will support 800MHz and 1066MHz processor system bus, dual-channel 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM, Intel’s new GMA950 graphics core (i945G only), Serial ATA II with some new RAID modes by the new ICH7 I/O controller and numerous other enhancements. Intel’s currently shipping i955X core-logic is positioned as a high-end offering for Intel’s top chips typically offers higher speed compared to Intel’s previous premier 925XE platform as well as Intel’s 945-series chipsets. Intel’s new generation of chipsets will only support DDR2 memory, which is likely to catalyze system makers and end-users to transit to the new type of memory.

Having two processing engines instead of one Intel Pentium D and Intel Pentium Extreme Edition processors will be capable of running many applications at the same time more efficiently than the Pentium 4, but the latter is likely to have advantage over the former in single-threaded apps because of higher clock-speeds, as the first dual-core microprocessors from Intel Corp. will work at 2.80 – 3.20GHz speeds, much lower compared to 3.80GHz of single-core processors.

Intel recently announced it would ship “hundreds of thousands” desktop dual-core processors in the Q2 2005 with the amount of Intel Pentium D and Intel Pentium Extreme Edition processors shipped this year to total “millions of units”.

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